What is a GIS?
Geographic Information System (GIS) is a computer system used to capture, store, manipulate, analyze, manage, and display all types of spatial or geographic data. GIS applications are tools that allow end users to perform spatial queries, analysis, improve spatial data, and create hard copy maps. In a simple way GIS can be defined as an image that is in reference to Earth or has an x and y coordinate and whose values are stored in the table. Most of the time GIS is used to create and print maps.
This is a software with the help of mapping the target area. After that, through the data received, accurate information about that entire area is acquired while sitting in the office. This software is being used in the fields of earth science, farming, defense, nuclear science, architecture, town planner, mapping, mobile etc. The main software of GIS are ILWIS, IDRISI, ArcGIS etc.
GIS can be used to solve a location based question such as “What is located here” or where to find specific features? GIS can retrieve values from the user map, such as how much forest area there is on the land. This is done using the query builder tool. For example, you can do many more combinations to show elevation data, river data, land use data and information about the landscape of the area. With the map, you can tell where the high ground is or the best place to build a house, GIS helps to find new information.
History of GIS
GIS has evolved with computer systems. Here are brief events that have taken place for the development of the GIS system.
- Year 1854 – The term GIS, which uses the scientific method to make maps, was used in 1854 by Jon Snow.
- Year 1960 – Modern computerized GIS system started in the year 1960.
- Year 1980 – This period saw the emergence of commercial GIS software such as M & S Computing, Environmental Systems Research Institute (ESRI) and Computer Aided Resource Information System (CARIS). All these software were similar to CGIS with more functionality and user friendly. Of all the above, the most popular today are ESG products such as ArcGIS, ArcView which accounts for around 80% of the global market.
How GIS Work?
- Visualizing Data: Geographic data that is stored in a database is displayed in the GIS software.
- Combining Data: Layers are combined to create a desire map.
- Query: To find the value in a layer or to create a geographic query.
Advantages of GIS
- Better decision made by government people
- Civic engagement due to better system
- To help identify communities that are at risk.
- Helps to identify cases of criminology.
- Better management of natural resources.
- Better communication during emergencies.
- Cost savings due to better decision
- Finding out different types of trends within the community.
- Planning Demographic Change
Components of GIS
Hardware is the physical component of a computer. Hardware may include hard disks, processors, motherboards, etc. All these hardware work together to act as computers. GIS software runs on these hardware. A computer can be called a desktop or server based standalone. GIS can run on both of these.
GIS software provides devices and functions to input and store spatial data or geographic data. The GIS software uses Relation Database Management System (RDBMS) to store geographic data.
Data are also the fuel and the most important and expensive component for GIS. Geographic data is a combination of physical characteristics and this information is stored in tables. These tables are maintained by the RDBMS. The process of capturing geographic data is called digitization, which is the most tedious task. It is the process of converting scanned hardcopy maps to digital format. Digitization is done by tracing lines with geographic characteristics.
People are users of the GIS system. People use all three components to run a GIS system.Today everyone uses GIS to do their daily work.
Types of GIS
Raster data stores features information in a cell-based manner.
There are three types of vector data, point, line, and polygon. These data bases are created by digitizing the data. These store information in x, y coordinates. The vectors model is used to store data, which has discrete boundaries such as country boundaries, land parcels, and roads.
Geographic Information System (GIS) is a computer system used to capture, store, manipulate, analyze, manage, and display all types of spatial or geographic data.
GIS is used to create and print maps.
This is a software with the help of mapping the target area. After that, through the data received, accurate information about that entire area is acquired while sitting in the office. This software is being used in the fields of earth science, farming, defense, nuclear science, architecture, town planner, mapping, mobile etc. The term GIS, which uses the scientific method for map-making, was used in 1854 by Jon Snow. There are two types of GIS data – raster data and vector data.
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